I would like to be the first to say that the Great Lakes region will be less cool when you leave.
If you want to see the best places in Missouri then I suggest making the trip to the ozarks. My family used to own a huge farm in Fremont (good luck finding it) and all I can say is that areas beauty is like the UP, except warmer and with hills.
I hope to be able to make a M&G for ya, but I just fell into a shit-ton of things that hopefully much like your endeavor will be nothing but great things ahead..yet very unknown.
Give em hell...